REVIEW by @_Shoe_Girl_ : Barefoot Season by Susan Mallery – Release Date 3/27/12 (@susanmallery)

Michelle Sanderson may appear to be a strong, independent woman, but on the inside, she’s still the wounded girl who fled home years ago. A young army vet, Michelle returns to the quaint Blackberry Island Inn to claim her inheritance and recover from the perils of war. Instead, she finds the owner’s suite occupied by the last person she wants to see. 
Carly Williams and Michelle were once inseparable, until a shocking betrayal destroyed their friendship. And now Carly is implicated in the financial disaster lurking behind the inn’s cheerful veneer. 
Single mother Carly has weathered rumors, lies and secrets for a lifetime, and is finally starting to move forward with love and life. But if the Blackberry Island Inn goes under, Carly and her daughter will go with it. 
To save their livelihoods, Carly and Michelle will undertake a turbulent truce. It’ll take more than a successful season to move beyond their devastating past, but with a little luck and a beautiful summer, they may just rediscover the friendship of a lifetime.

Susan Mallery is one of my “go to” authors.  I don’t even read the “blurbs” anymore.  I just see a book by her, and get it!  She has NEVER let me down; I have loved every book of hers that I’ve read, and Barefoot Season is NO exception!  It may be, in fact, my favorite book by her to date.
Upon starting the book, I thought it was going to be solely Michelle’s story; her coming home from the Army to recover, and reclaim her inheritance, the Blackberry Island Inn.  I quickly realize that this was not JUST Michelle’s story, but Carly’s, too.  Michelle and Carly are forced to work together, which neither of them are excited about. They butt heads often and hurt each other often, but that leads to understanding and reclaiming their old friendship.
This was not a “typical” Susan Mallery novel, as it was women’s fiction, rather than romance.  While there ARE a few romantic elements, the story mainly focused on relationships between the characters.  I found the characters extremely believeable.  Michelle is quite….difficult, to phrase it nicely.  I REALLY liked this, as not everyone has a friendly, sunny disposition all the time.  Carly was always trying to remain polite and optimistic, yet she was also very real, losing her temper at times, and finding the strength to stand up for herself, which I also really liked.
Overall:  great setting, great characters, great story!  I can’t wait to get my hands on the 2nd book in this series!!

 I give Barefoot Season 5 Heels!


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